Jab we met...
Let's rewind back to freshman year of college for a minute. One evening, my roommate Alyssa excitedly told me that she had met the cutest Indian boy who I just had to meet. She proceeded to show me and our other roommates Rushil's Instagram feed, telling me that he was also on an Indian dance team (Raas) and that he was perfect for me. Within a few weeks, I met Rushil at our school's Mr. SASA event and by the end of the night I found myself charmed and hoping to see him again.
Falling in love
Over the next several years we got to know each other while enjoying the Pitt undergraduate experience. From Pasta Plus dates and hikes around Panther Hollow Pond, to late nights in Hillman and our friends' apartments, we became the best of friends. We watched each other discover new passions, strengthen our talents, and grow into better versions of ourselves. We feel blessed to have shared this integral time growing together and reflect back on these special moments often.
Distance makes the heart grow fonder
The next chapter of our story starts when I started medical school at Temple University in Philadelphia bringing me closer to my family but starting 4 years of long distance with Rushil. While Rushil bounced from city to city laying the foundation for his career, I spent hours tirelessly studying working to do the same. These 4 years were filled with long phone calls, endless visits, and many hard goodbyes, but taught us valuable lessons that have made us so much stronger together.
Even to this day, I cannot put into words how special this moment was for me. I planned a "weekend getaway" for Sonali and I to spend a weekend in the mountains. I drove up to the top of Whiteface Mountain with a girlfriend...but came back down with a fiancé! After our special moment, we drove to our cabin where Shreya and some of Sonali's best friends were waiting to surprise her to celebrate the special day!
Little did I know, the surprises didn't stop there. After we left the beautiful Adirondacks we drove back to my house and I was shocked to see my family, friends, and Rushil's parents excitedly waiting in the doorway. Rushil and I were whisked upstairs and given Indian clothes to wear. We had a small roka ceremony which is a pre-engagement ceremony. Roka in English translates to "we have stopped each other" officially signaling that we are committed to each other.
The Engagement Party
After getting officially engaged, it was time to celebrate in my hometown, Cleveland! Our engagement party started with a gor dhana ceremony, followed by the shoe game, speeches, and dance performances. I got to introduce Sonali to much of my family and in the evening, we continued the celebration with some of our closest friends. Sonali and I felt so lucky to be surrounded by so much love and support through this special weekend.
Happily Ever After
These past few years together have felt like a fairytale and we are so excited to take the next steps in our journey together. We feel so blessed to have each and every one of you in our lives and cannot wait to celebrate this new chapter in our story together in May!
-Sonali & Rushil